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Chrysler to Recall 1.3 Million Minivans

DETROIT Reuters reported that The Chrysler arm of DaimlerChrysler AG said on Friday it will begin repairing 1.3 million minivans to fix a possible fuel leak linked to fires, ending a year-long delay in the recall.

Chrysler had told federal regulators in September 2000 it would recall the vans built between 1996 and 2000 to fix the problem, but delayed the process, citing a lack of parts. Federal officials said 19 fires had been reported before the recall, and six had been reported since, with 56 injuries linked to the minivans.

The problem affects Chrysler, Dodge and Plymouth minivans with 3.3 liter and 3.8 liter V-6 engines. A seal in a fuel line near the engine can fail, causing gasoline to leak. Chrysler will install a clamp on the seal.

Chrysler spokeswoman Angela Spencer Ford said the first stage of the recall will target 1996 model year minivans since the frequency of the problem increases with vehicle age. She said the company hopes to notify all affected owners within a couple of months.